Lovdahl happy to keep low profile at Stingrays
SHANE Lovdahl insists he's happy to be an unsung hero at Hull Stingrays this season.
The 28-year-old American has proved a solid acquisition since signing in the summer.
However, having registered only five assists and no goals in 22 games, his contribution has not attracted the headlines of his more illustrious colleagues.
Lovdahl said: "It doesn't matter who I play for, no matter what I get or don't get points-wise, or whether the fans, team or anyone tells me good job or not good job, I just go out and play.
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"I don't like losing, not just losing the game, but losing my battles in the defensive zone, I don't like to get scored on.
"I'm not a huge fighter or points guy but I know my job.
"When I used to be faster was when I had points, I could jump up into the play, but these days I'm a little slower, I know my limits."
Lovdahl prides himself on being known to his coaches as a player who "turns up every night and contributes".
However, he candidly admits he did not settle down straight away in Stingrays' colours.
Although the first defenceman announced for the new campaign in July, he was the last to arrive.
The initial delay centred around his visa photos and then the fact the paperwork was shuttling between his listed permanent address – his parents in Anchorage, Alaska – and his temporary home – his girlfriend's house in Davenport, Iowa.
He eventually rocked up nearly a month late, and then had to adjust to his first season in Britain.
It's only now that he feels more at home, particularly now he's paired up with Tomas Valecko's replacement, the more defensively-minded Martin Ondrej.
But Lovdahl makes no bones about the settling down time.
"I arrived a little out of shape because of the delay with my visa, so I didn't get as much ice time as I wanted," he said.
"I also wasn't used to playing four-man defence, I've always done at least five.
"Tomas was good offensively, but I didn't think we clicked together, I think me and Marty click better."
There is, though, one person who will not mince his words if Lovdahl fails to "do the business" for Stingrays – his father, who used to play college hockey.
"I know dad will always tell me the truth," said Lovdahl.
Now, though, Lovdahl can look forward to helping Stingrays get back on track after Thursday's dismal 7-2 defeat against Braehead.
It brought a promising run of form to a grinding halt, although Lovdahl and defensive partner Ondrej were more solid performers than most.
"We have to come out strongly with no let-up tonight, otherwise Braehead have the players to put the puck in the net," said Lovdahl.
"We can beat anyone on any given night, but we all have to buy into playing 60 minutes every game, it doesn't matter who the opposition is.
"We lost 4-3 to Edinburgh in my first road game, but last time we did better and got the two points."